JPMorgan under investigation over fund sales

SEC, other authorities seeking information about the bank's use of proprietary products in its wealth management unit

May 6, 2015 @ 9:30 am

By Bloomberg News

JPMorgan Chase & Co. received subpoenas and inquiries from the Securities and Exchange Commission and other regulators about how it sells its own mutual funds and other proprietary products.

The SEC, other government authorities and a self-regulatory organization are seeking information about the bank's use of proprietary products in its wealth-management business, the New York-based company disclosed Tuesday in a regulatory filing. The lender said it's cooperating.

The SEC's enforcement division has been looking into whether the bank and its brokerage affiliate adopted a strategy that uses bonuses and other incentives to encourage their financial advisers to steer clients improperly into in-house funds, structured notes and other investments that generate fees for the bank, Bloomberg reported in March, citing people familiar with the investigation.

FIDUCIARY STANDARD

The probe includes a review of pensions and other accounts that hold the bank to a so-called fiduciary standard, which obligates it to put clients' financial interests ahead of its own, the people said.

JPMorgan's asset-management business has grown as it and other big banks face regulatory pressure in areas such as trading. The firm had the highest percentage growth in asset inflows of any large manager in the five years through 2014, ending the period with $1.7 trillion in assets under management, according to a February presentation to investors.

Darin Oduyoue, a bank spokesman, declined to comment on the SEC probe.

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